Roasted Chicken and Wild Rice Soup with Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, Thyme

We visited my sweet sister-in-law this past weekend and had a wonderful time …………. just being together and catching up with each other. She’s a wonderful cook and we enjoyed several of her “specialties”, one of them being this yummy soup ……….

The recipe is an oldie from Cooking Light 2001 but is timeless and classic in flavor and deliciousness! Although the soup was fabulous without any changes, I always have a difficult time leaving well enough alone; I adapted the recipe just a bit, adding a few fresh herbs that are still poking up in my herb garden and some tiny green peas for color, extra nutrition and visual appeal. If you don’t have fresh herbs feel free to make the soup without them or with whatever herbs you have. It will be wonderful – I promise!
Roasted Chicken & Wild Rice Soup w/ Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme

6 ounce box long-grain and wild rice mix* (such as Uncle Ben’s)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium sweet onion, diced
4 stalks celery , diced
4-5 medium carrots, peeled, cut into half lengthwise and sliced into 1/4 inch slices
2 garlic cloves, minced
8 ounce package mushrooms, halved and sliced into 1/4 inch slices
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon dried tarragon
2 cups water
2 tablespoons dry sherry
2 15 ounce cans low sodium chicken broth
1 12 ounce can fat-free evaporated milk, or 12 ounces whole milk
3 cups shredded roasted skinless chicken
2 cups tiny frozen peas
2 teaspoons fresh parsley**, finely chopped
1 teaspoon fresh sage**, finely chopped
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary**, finely chopped
1 teaspoon fresh thyme**, finely chopped

1. Prepare rice according to package directions; set aside.

2. Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add chopped onion and next 4 ingredients (onion through mushrooms), and sauté for 6-8 minutes or until onion is tender.

3. Stir the flour and tarragon into the onion mixture, and cook for 1 minute, stirring frequently.

4. Add 2 cups water, sherry, broth, and evaporated milk; bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes or until slightly thickened. Stir in cooked rice***, frozen peas and chicken; cook for 1-2 minutes longer or until thoroughly heated.

5. Combine chopped fresh herbs, add to soup and stir, reserving one teaspoon of herbs for garnish. Ladle soup into bowls and sprinkle with reserved herbs.

* You could also use 6 ounces of jasmine or basmati rice, cooked, in place of the wild rice mix.
** This combination of herbs is delicious but if you don’t have fresh herbs or don’t have all of the herbs listed, just use what you have, dried herbs are also delicious, only use just half of the amount of the fresh herbs.
*** This soup does well prepared in advance but don’t add rice to the rest of the soup until just before serving as rice tends to absorb a lot of the liquid and puff up as it sits in the soup.

Adapted from Cooking Light 2001

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